The Lake Tahoe Water Trail (Water Trail) is an endless 72-mile water route along the shoreline segmented into seven Day Trips, including 20 designated public launch/landing sites or “trailheads,” paddle route itineraries, and navigation tools to help paddlers have a safe and fun adventure.
Lake Tahoe water temperature is always frigid, even on the hottest days of summer.
- Beware of cold water shock and hypothermia
- Pay attention to changing wind and weather conditions
- Wear your SUP leash
- Carry a whistle and flashlight
- ALWAYS wear your life jacket!
Gliding through its world-famous crystalline waters, paddlers experience the rich treasures of Lake Tahoe, like calm mirror-flat mornings, 360 degree vistas of snow-capped Sierra Nevada mountains, historic sites such as the Thunderbird Lodge, Vikingsholm and Ehrman Mansion, and access to beautiful sandy public beaches. Whether you’re looking to access waterfront attractions, historic sites, bird watching sanctuaries, picnics on the beach or a lakeside bistro, you’ll find it along the Water Trail.
As the only paddling source for Lake Tahoe, the website – www.laketahoewatertrail.org - and printed maps include paddle routes to match your ability levels, paddle shops, water safety and aquatic invasive species prevention tips. The new website mobile feature includes a mapping tool for real-time navigation, and on-the-spot weather and marine conditions. Day Trip Maps include details about parking, on-site facilities and amenities, as well as public beach access to nearby hiking trails, restaurants, shopping, historic sites, lodging and campgrounds. The Day Trip Maps are free to download from the Water Trail website.
Every mountain mariner, non-motorized and motorized, should own a Water Trail Map & Guide. Waterproof and tear resistant, this large (24” x 37”) 4-color map includes underwater and land topography, latitude/longitude coordinates, GPS waypoints, and a detailed listing of shoreline services and points of interest for Lake Tahoe and Fallen Leaf Lake to help boaters navigate our water world. The Map & Guide can be found at Lake Tahoe locations and paddle shops listed on www.laketahoewatertrail.org.
While gazing at it from land is breathtaking, life changes once you get on Lake Tahoe. The Water Trail helps paddlers understand the interconnected relationship between man and nature, and how to safely navigate and protect Lake Tahoe’s pristine watershed.
Funding for the 20 trailhead educational wayfinding interpretive signage was provided by Placer County, Nevada Department of Wildlife, Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation, TRPA, Tahoe Lakefront Owners' Association, City of South Lake Tahoe, Nevada Division of State Lands, and the California Tahoe Conservancy.